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Old 10-16-2008, 06:23 PM   #1
Steve Rindsberg
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Default AVG and ZoneAlarm get into fistfight, break browsers

This happened identically on two friends' computers in the last couple days, so I thought I'd mention it here.

Both computers were running AVG and ZoneAlarm free editions.

AVG updated itself then a short while later, browsers stopped working (MSIE, Opera, Firefox).

A reboot would sometimes restore connectivity for a few minutes.

Outlook continued to work; you could ping the world outside, but no web browsing.

AVG had several of ZA's files in quarantine.

AVG's site mentioned that yes, it'd been false positives on their part, and a later update made it stop nattering at ZA, but by that time the damage was done. POSSIBLY I could have restored the ZA files from quarantine, but instead I removed it from my neighbor's PC. My friend did the same with his wife's computer.

That seems to've done it. Browsing's back at both places.

   
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Old 10-16-2008, 10:42 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Rindsberg View Post
AVG had several of ZA's files in quarantine.

AVG's site mentioned that yes, it'd been false positives on their part, and a later update made it stop nattering at ZA, but by that time the damage was done. POSSIBLY I could have restored the ZA files from quarantine, but instead I removed it from my neighbor's PC. My friend did the same with his wife's computer.

That seems to've done it. Browsing's back at both places.
Well, occasional false positives are unavoidable with the sheer magnitude of software out there. It's unfortunate this happens with this piece of software, but removing either (it's not clear to me which one you removed) seems to be the worst possible reaction. Removing either, you now have less protection, while malware is on the increase.

   
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Old 10-17-2008, 05:04 AM   #3
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What OS?? I remember from years ago, that with one version of Windows XP this was a problem but not the other, but now I can't remember which was which, Professional or Home. I didn't keep up with how it did with Vista. However, AVG said it was working on eliminating the wrinkles. So was the OS involved updated?? Then, again, some wrinkles are stubborn.

George

I meant for this to go as a response to Steve, but the software can be tricky.
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Old 10-17-2008, 07:44 AM   #4
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Good point, George. Windows XP / SP2 (in my neighbor's case; not sure of my friend's computer, as he took care of that the same way I did the neighbor's. XP, certainly, but I'm not sure what SP).

AVG released an update that solved the problem almost immediately.

   
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Old 10-17-2008, 07:42 AM   #5
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Indeed, false positives are one of the things we have to accept in order to get the benefit of all the non-false ones. AVG, the antivirus software, simply made a mistake. It happens. They corrected it very quickly. I've no complaint there.

I removed zone alarm, a software firewall (and enabled Windows' own firewall temporarily). I may go back and install the newest version of ZA, or a different firewall.

If you consider removing a piece of software that disables the computer's access to the internet to be the worst possible reaction ... well ... we're both grown-up enough to accept that we have different opinions. ;-)

The ultimate in virus protection is the off switch. If only it didn't make the computer so difficult to use ...

   
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Old 10-17-2008, 12:15 PM   #6
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steve: I may go back and install the newest version of ZA, or a different firewall.
While I use the free version of ZA, I've had problems in the past when going to a new ZA version and it was such a pita that I now don't update ZA when I have a working version unless I have some sort of problem with ZA...

I was giving some consideration to using AVG because I'm pissed off with Computer Associates AV software--I started with CA when they offered a free version and inertia has kept me with them but I'm getting more and more annoyed with them...

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Old 10-18-2008, 08:22 AM   #7
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AVG seems to do a pretty good job, and several people have recommended Antivir as another free one (Marjolein ... have I got that right? I'm thinking of the one you use).

   
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Old 10-18-2008, 09:45 AM   #8
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AVG seems to do a pretty good job, and several people have recommended Antivir as another free one (Marjolein ... have I got that right? I'm thinking of the one you use).
Yes, Antivir is what I use. No complaints. Of course I do get the occasional false positive, but I just tell it to ignore the file. If it stays false positive, I report it. AVG did some things I don't tolerate, so it's banned from my systems.

   
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Old 10-18-2008, 10:00 AM   #9
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marjolein: Antivir is what I use.
Is it developed by Avira?

Does the free version tack on any sort of "scanned by antivir" to emails?

Thanks...

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Old 10-19-2008, 11:24 AM   #10
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Is it developed by Avira?

Does the free version tack on any sort of "scanned by antivir" to emails?
Yes, it's by Avira. No, the free version doesn't tack anything to emails because it doesn't support scanning email - you'll need an upgrade for that (I don't - the free version does exactly all I need).

   
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